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Social shopping set to double by 2014

Following news that Pinterest is to significantly increase the number of visitors who can access its site, new research commissioned by eBay estimates that the value of social shopping is set to more than double by 2014.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Social shopping set to double by 2014

The study conducted by Conlumino, estimates that in the next five years the value of social shopping will rise from £1.6 billion to around £3.3 billion. It also found that UK retail sales directly via social media are forecast to grow by 44% to £290 million by 2014 as more and more retailers target consumers with personalised offers and deals on social networks.

However, Ebay says the real value from social media will come from the way it is used to influence and inspire purchases, with £3 billion of retail sales predicted to be influenced by social media by 2014.  Nearly half (46%) of social media users were found to be already using social platforms while thinking about making a purchase, with  40% of users actively deciding what to buy based on what they have seen on social media platforms, including reviews and recommendations.

The research also revealed that nearly half of social media users are interacting directly with retailers on social media platforms.

Petra Jung, head of mobile shopping at eBay said: "There’s a billion pound prize for UK retailers in using social to help customers make up their minds when they’re looking to buy something. Generating direct sales is part of the prize in social shopping but using peer-to-peer networks to influence purchasing decisions is the far bigger opportunity. 

"Many shoppers, particularly women, want fun and inspiration as much as information when they shop, and social networks are a great way to seek out a friend’s advice, see other people’s style, and get ideas."

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